What To Bring With You When Hiking In Hawaii?

The vibrant flora and fauna, picturesque landscapes, and stunning beaches make Hawaii a dream destination for adventurers and nature enthusiasts no matter where they are from across the globe, and there’s no better way to experience the natural beauty of Hawaii than by hiking through its diverse terrains.

But the thing is, when it comes to hiking, it’s not just about slipping on your hiking boots and heading out. The unique terrain of Hawaii, its climate, and its wildlife require a bit more preparation to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. 

So, if you’re planning a hike in Hawaii, it’s important to bring the right gear to tackle the challenges and immerse yourself in the breathtaking scenery.

In this article, we will guide you through the essentials of what to bring with you when hiking in Hawaii. From proper footwear to the right gear, we’ll cover everything you need to know to make the most of your hike while staying safe and comfortable.

Here are some of the many things that you need to bring with you when you’re hiking in Hawaii

Good Hiking Shoes With Treads

Hiking in Hawaii often involves walking on rough terrain, uneven surfaces, and slippery rocks, which means without proper footwear, you run the risk of injuring your feet, such as getting blisters or cuts. 

This is why having proper hiking gear with you is a must. 

Shoes for hiking in Hawaii with treads can help prevent such injuries by providing a protective layer between your feet and the ground. The treads help to absorb the impact of your footfalls, which reduces the amount of stress placed on your feet. Along with that, good hiking shoes with treads can also provide ankle support. When hiking on rocky terrain or uneven ground, your ankles are susceptible to twisting or spraining, and the right pair of hiking shoes with treads can help prevent this by providing added support and stability to your ankles.

Another advantage of wearing hiking shoes with treads is their durability. Hiking shoes are designed to withstand the wear and tear of hiking, making them a reliable option for your hiking adventures in Hawaii. They are typically made of high-quality materials that can withstand exposure to harsh elements, such as water, mud, and rocks. This means that you can use them for multiple hikes and adventures without having to worry about them falling apart.

Lastly, hiking shoes with treads can also provide comfort to hikers. They are designed with cushioning and arch support to help reduce foot fatigue and provide added comfort on long hikes. This means that you can hike for longer distances and durations without experiencing discomfort or pain.

Light Stretchable Pants Or Shorts

Light stretchable pants are an essential item to bring when hiking in Hawaii for several reasons. The first reason is that they provide comfort and flexibility. When hiking, your legs are constantly in motion, and you need pants that allow you to move freely without restriction. Light stretchable pants offer flexibility and stretchability that regular pants may not provide, allowing you to climb over rocks, maneuver steep inclines, and walk on uneven surfaces with ease.

The second reason why light stretchable pants are a must-have is their breathability. Hawaii’s weather can be hot and humid, and regular pants can trap heat and moisture, leading to discomfort and chafing. Light stretchable pants are made of breathable materials that allow air to circulate, wicking away sweat and keeping you cool and dry.

In addition to comfort and breathability, light stretchable pants also provide protection. Hawaii’s terrain can be rugged, and light stretchable pants can protect your legs from scratches, insect bites, and sunburn. The stretchable material helps keep you dry in rainy conditions, reducing the risk of skin irritation and discomfort.

Another option is shorts, but there are some things that you might want to think about before wearing them for your hike. 

Wearing shorts while hiking in Hawaii can be a comfortable option, but it’s essential to consider the potential risks. 

The terrain can be challenging, and shorts may not offer enough protection against scrapes and scratches. Hikers should also be mindful of Hawaii’s unpredictable weather, insect populations, and intense sun exposure, which is why choosing appropriate clothing made of breathable materials and applying sunscreen and insect repellent can help mitigate these risks. 

Ultimately, hikers should assess the trail conditions and weather forecast before deciding to wear shorts on their hike. By taking precautions and making informed decisions, hikers can enjoy their Hawaiian hiking experience comfortably and safely.

Light Shirt To Keep Cool

When hiking in Hawaii, it is crucial to wear a light shirt that can help keep you cool and comfortable throughout the hike. 

Here are some reasons why wearing a light shirt is a must:


The hot and humid climate of Hawaii can make hiking uncomfortable and strenuous. Wearing a light shirt made of breathable material, such as cotton or moisture-wicking fabric, allows air to circulate around the body, keeping you cooler and more comfortable.

Sun Protection

Wearing a light shirt can also provide necessary sun protection to prevent sunburns and other skin damage. Choosing a light shirt with long sleeves can help protect your arms from harmful UV rays.

Moisture Management

Hiking in Hawaii can cause you to sweat a lot, and a light shirt can help manage moisture by wicking away sweat from the body. This can help prevent chafing and discomfort, making your hike more enjoyable.

Insect Protection

Hawaii is known for its mosquito and bug population, and wearing a light shirt with long sleeves can provide protection against bites and insect-borne diseases.


Wearing a light shirt can make your hiking experience more comfortable by preventing skin irritation and providing protection from the elements. It also allows you to move freely and comfortably, making the hike less strenuous and more enjoyable.


Light Rain Jacket And Mosquito Repellent

When going on a hike in Hawaii, you should bring a light rain jacket and mosquito repellent so you could protect yourself from sudden downpours and pesky bugs that you might encounter while hiking.

You have to keep in mind that Hawaii’s weather can be unpredictable, and a rain shower can occur suddenly and unexpectedly, even during the dry season. In order to stay comfortable and dry, it’s important to pack a light rain jacket that is waterproof and breathable. This will keep you protected from getting soaked and keep you warm during sudden downpours. A good rain jacket should also be easy to pack and carry in your backpack, making it a practical item to bring on your hike.

Also, mosquitoes are prevalent in Hawaii, especially in areas with high humidity and rainfall. The thing is, mosquito bites can be annoying, and on top of that, they can also lead to serious diseases such as dengue fever and Zika virus. To avoid getting bitten, bring mosquito repellent on your hike. There are many different types of mosquito repellent available, including sprays, lotions, and bracelets. 

This is why it is important to choose a product that is effective against mosquitoes and easy to apply. Remember to apply the repellent to your clothing, as well as your skin, for added protection.

By bringing a light rain jacket and mosquito repellent on your hike in Hawaii, you can stay comfortable, dry, and protected from pesky bugs. Enjoy the beautiful scenery without worrying about unexpected rain showers or mosquito bites.

A Backpack With The Things You Need 

When hiking in Hawaii, it’s important to bring a backpack filled with essentials to ensure you have a comfortable and safe hike. 

Here are some of the things you should pack:

  • Water – Bring enough water to last the entire hike and consider bringing a water filter or purification tablets if you plan to refill your water from natural sources.
  • Snacks – Pack energy-boosting snacks such as granola bars, trail mix, or fresh fruit to keep your energy levels up throughout the hike.
  • Sun Protection – Bring sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays.
  • First Aid Kit – Bring a basic first aid kit that includes items such as band-aids, antiseptic wipes, and gauze.
  • Navigation Tools – Bring a trail map, compass, or GPS device to navigate the trails.
  • Emergency Supplies – Bring a whistle, a flashlight, and extra batteries in case you get lost or stuck on the trail after dark.
  • Insect Repellent – Protect yourself from bugs by bringing insect repellent, especially if you plan to hike in areas with high humidity and rainfall.
  • Extra Clothing – Bring a change of clothes or a light jacket in case the weather changes unexpectedly, or if you get wet during the hike.
  • Multi-Tool or Knife – A multi-tool or knife can come in handy in many situations, such as cutting branches to clear a trail or opening a can of food.
  • Camera – Bring a camera to take photos of the stunning scenery.
  • Cash or Credit Card – Bring cash or a credit card for parking or entrance fees.
  • Personal Hygiene Items – Bring hand sanitizer, wet wipes, and toilet paper for personal hygiene needs.
  • Emergency Shelter – In case of an emergency, bring a lightweight emergency shelter such as a tarp or emergency bivvy.

Remember to pack light and distribute the weight evenly. Adjust the straps to ensure a comfortable fit. By bringing a backpack filled with essentials, you can ensure that you are prepared for any situation that may arise while hiking in Hawaii Oahu.

A Map 

While it’s not always necessary to bring a physical map when hiking in Hawaii, it’s still highly recommended. Hawaii’s terrain can be challenging, with steep inclines, rocky trails, and dense vegetation. Even experienced hikers can get lost or disoriented in the wilderness, especially if they are exploring unfamiliar areas.

Carrying a map allows hikers to orient themselves, identify landmarks, and navigate the terrain more effectively. A map can also provide valuable information about the trail, such as distance, elevation, and difficulty level, allowing hikers to plan their routes and estimate their hiking time more accurately.

In addition, a map can be an important safety tool in case of an emergency. If a hiker gets lost or injured, a map can help rescuers locate them more quickly and efficiently. While GPS devices and mobile phones can also provide this information, they can sometimes fail due to signal loss or battery issues. A physical map provides a reliable backup in case of such situations.

It’s important to note that not all trails in Hawaii are well-marked or maintained, and some may not have clear signs or markers. In these cases, a map can be especially useful in helping hikers stay on track and avoid getting lost.

A Fully Charged Smartphone 

Carrying a mobile phone is also a great idea when hiking in Hawaii. A phone can be a useful tool in case of emergencies, allowing hikers to call for help or contact emergency services. It can also be used to take pictures, record videos, and share your experience with other people.

In addition, smartphones today often have built-in GPS systems that can help hikers track their location, find directions, and estimate their hiking time. Some mobile apps are specifically designed for hikers, providing detailed maps and trail information that can be extremely helpful.

However, it’s important to remember that mobile phone signals can be weak or non-existent in some areas of Hawaii, especially in remote or mountainous regions. As such, hikers should not rely solely on their phones for navigation or communication, and should always carry a physical map as a backup.

To ensure that your phone is always usable, it’s important to bring along a portable power bank or charger, especially if you plan on using your phone for navigation or taking pictures for an extended period. 

This will help ensure that your phone is fully charged and ready to use in case of an emergency.


When planning a hiking trip in Hawaii, it is essential to bring along certain items to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. As one of the most beautiful places on earth, Hawaii boasts stunning landscapes and rich biodiversity but also presents unique challenges for hikers due to its tropical climate and rugged terrain.

Bringing enough water, sunscreen, and insect repellent is crucial for staying hydrated, protecting from the sun’s harmful rays, and warding off pesky bugs. Wearing comfortable and sturdy footwear, such as hiking boots or shoes, is also important for navigating rocky trails and preventing injuries.

Carrying a fully charged mobile phone, a map or GPS device, and a first-aid kit can be lifesaving in case of an emergency. Additionally, packing some snacks, a hat, and a lightweight rain jacket can make the hike more comfortable and enjoyable.

By being prepared and bringing the right gear, hikers can fully appreciate the beauty of Hawaii’s natural wonders while also staying safe and comfortable. Whether you are a seasoned hiker or a beginner, taking the time to plan and pack appropriately will ensure an unforgettable experience on the trails of Hawaii.